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Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Pugwash - Almanac (Sugarbush Records Vinyl)

The thing I like most about Thomas Walsh is that first and foremost, he is a music fan. In fact, initially all my conversations with him were about music. We are both massive fans of XTC and The Move and we blathered on about both personally and through Anything Should Happen. Then one day he said to me, by the way I have a band, have you heard of us.

I had, but I hadn't listened to Pugwash much, but when I did and told him how much I liked what he was doing, he was so appreciative and that sums up the man. Great musical taste, one of the wittiest people I know and a fine singer songwriter.

I get invited to a lot of things, but I always make a point of going to see Pugwash when they around. They are one of the best live bands around. Technically ace, great songs, surprising covers, a hilarious sense of humour and loads of time for their fans.

They are a fine four piece, self effacing and in such demand that Shaun is currently on tour with Pete Wylie and Tosh is playing guitar for The Divine Comedy. It's great Pop, real singalong music. Walsh's vocals sound very much like his hero, Jeff Lynne, no bad thing.

Almanac is Pugwash's second album from 2002 and has been long deleted. Not now though as it's been picked up by Sugarbush thankfully and it adds to that label's burgeoning reputation. I could pick any of the 14 songs to preview, so I've picked my three favourites. Apples is a personal favourite of Andy Partridge, who was to sign them to his Ape label.

Jason Falkner plays the organ on Keep Moving On, my second selection and he also guests on three more of the songs including a great guitar solo on Weaker Man. Another of our faves, Duncan Maitland adds keyboards across the piece.

The band are garnering a growing reputation in the States at the moment, let's hope we don't lose them completely to our American Friends. Well done Sugarbush for bringing this gem back into public view,  You can buy it on orange or white vinyl here.

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